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Mudslides, downed trees, flooded roads and swollen waterways. Again.

Winter storms keep reshaping soggy Sonoma County, with another drenching expected to deliver up to 2 new inches of precipitation Thursday.

The storm that hit early Tuesday brought torrential rain that swamped county roadways, creeks and rain gauges and pushed the Russian River above flood level for the second time this year. Hillside communities like Cazadero reported more than 5 inches of rain, while other parts of the county received up to 3 inches.

The river was expected to crest early today at 34.5 feet in Guerneville, a level that affects mostly low-lying areas. The muddy water likely will retreat below flood stage by this afternoon, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

In a year where the river already reached 38 feet in January, some emergency officials expressed less concern Tuesday about waterways and more about the number of soaked hillsides giving way.

“The biggest thing for us is the slides,” said Monte Rio Fire Chief Steve Baxman. “We’ve had eight to 10 new ones, everywhere you go.”

After 2.77 inches of rain Tuesday, Santa Rosa now has received a total of 43.52 inches this season, essentially double the historical average. With so much rain, both drenched hillsides and trees keep giving way.

Emergency officials Tuesday received multiple reports of downed trees. Among them, a 100-year-old Douglas fir crashed into a Sebastopol home before dawn, slicing through the back of the house and landing just feet away from a sleeping woman.

The tree toppled over shortly after 5 a.m. following hours of torrential rain and strong winds. It upended with roots intact, leaving a gaping whole in Susan Nestor’s backyard.

“I was asleep — and all of a sudden a whomp and a flash, which was probably the electric lines being knocked out,” said Nestor, who has lived on Vine Avenue about 24 years.

The tree — 75- to 80-feet tall and at least 4 feet in diameter — took out a corner of the multistory hillside house, including the back deck and portions of a breakfast nook and bedroom.

“This thing was a monster tree,” said Sebastopol Fire Chief Bill Braga.

Around the county, rising waters Tuesday once more flooded roadways in familiar areas. San Antonio Creek crested its banks and blocked one of two southbound lanes on Highway 101 at the Marin County line from 9 to 10:30 a.m.

Flooding closed Highway 37 near Novato, a roadway that already has been partially or fully closed for about a dozen days this year. The intersection of Highways 12 and 121 south of Sonoma also was closed.

And the California Highway Patrol responded to about a half dozen stranded motorists who tried and failed to cross flooded stretches of county roads, said Officer Jon Sloat.

By 8 a.m. Tuesday, county road crews reported 12 roads closed from flooding, five from mudslides and five from fallen trees.

The downpours ended Tuesday morning, though skies remained overcast through the day.

But more rain is on the way.

Today the county could get up to three-quarters of an inch of rain and up to a half inch overnight before a new storm arrives, said Anna Schneider, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Monterey.

“The main front is going to be coming through on Thursday,” Schneider said. “It’s going to bring the heaviest rain.”

The hilltop areas could get up to 2.5 inches of rain Thursday.

The good news is the next storm is coming from the north, so it lacks the moisture of Tuesday’s tempest and should pass more quickly over Northern California.

Friday will feature lingering showers, Schneider said, “and then you’re looking at a pretty sunny weekend.”

By Tuesday evening, Russian River firefighters had helped a few residents evacuate from low-lying areas in Guerneville, said Fire Chief Max Ming. But this storm likely would affect far fewer people than when the river flooded in January.

“We’re not ramping up like the last time,” Ming said.

Earlier Tuesday relentless winds sent branches and downed trees into power lines, knocking out power for about 23,000 Pacific Gas and Electric Co. customers in Sonoma County. Outages affected 8,900 customers in Santa Rosa, plus another 5,400 in Rohnert Park, 3,645 in Cloverdale and 3,400 in the Sebastopol area, according to PG&E.

In Mendocino County, more than 11,500 PG&E customers Tuesday were reported without power, most of them along the coast. More than 9,000 people in Fort Bragg and more than 1,700 in Mendocino were without power, according to PG&E’s website.

By 9:15 p.m. Tuesday, only 1,186 customers in Sonoma County remained without power, with the largest concentration around Sebastopol, a PG&E spokeswoman reported. And only 756 customers were without power in a large region that included both Mendocino and Humboldt counties.

School officials closed campuses of the Guerneville School District, Harmony Union in Occidental and Two Rock Union School District near Petaluma. Officials also closed some campuses of Santa Rosa’s Piner-Olivet Union School District and Flowery Elementary School in Sonoma.

Monte Rio Union School District closed schools for Wednesday.

In the Sonoma Valley, over 2 inches of rain resulted in nine separate overflows of sewage, the county Water Agency reported Tuesday afternoon. The agency, which operates the Sonoma Valley County Sanitation District, said the majority of the overflows occurred in the Boyes Hot Springs and Fetters Hot Springs areas, with two overflows in Eldridge.

Some wastewater flowed into Sonoma Creek. The total volume of the overflows won’t be calculated “until the end of the storm event,” the agency said in a press release.

You can reach Staff Writer Robert Digitale at 707-521-5285 or robert.digitale@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @rdigit. You can reach Staff Writer Randi Rossmann at 707-521-5412 or randi.rossmann@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter@rossmannreport. You can reach Julie Johnson at 707-521-5220 or julie.johnson@pressdemocrat.com.

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